With a reputation for creativity and luxury, and a fittingly swish Chelsea location to boot, Tom Aikens’s flagship restaurant has long been praised by the critics and guides as the ideal place to experience the cuisine of someone who is now renowned as one of the UK’s best-known and most high-profile chefs.
Aikens’s SW3 restaurant is everything you might expect it to be – suitably high-end, palpably the cornerstone of his growing empire, and a refined, civil and formal place to enjoy a top-quality meal.
Located in an elegant townhouse, with luxurious furnishings and refined, modern design – little touches like the artwork and mirrors lending a more comfortable edge, although there is a degree of formality here – it exudes class and elegance and attracts a well-heeled crowd.
Aikens’s food displays a degree of controlled innovation which manifests itself on the plate in the form of adornments and elaborations on a series of well-picked, well-sourced and well-prepared luxury ingredients.
There is also a certain amount of rusticity in the flavours themselves – raw and pickled spring vegetables with herb mayonnaise, breast of pigeon with baby turnips and hazelnut crumb, roast turbot with crayfish and roast asparagus, for example. But dishes like suckling pig with roast pineapple and squid, poached chicken with apricot puree and open egg yolk raviolo, and cured foie gras with pickled mushrooms and foie gras mousse showcase Aikens’s skill at blending flavours expertly. Adornments such as flowers, pickles and purées add to this and the presentation of the food – no matter how earthy the flavours – is always delicate and artful.
The wine list covers a broad range of regions and prices, although as they are often towards the higher end there is a selection available by the glass. A tasting menu for lunch, at a competitive price, is also available.
Tom Aikens has worked in restaurants that have earned many Michelin stars, including establishments overseen by Joel Robuchon and Pierre Koffmann.
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